The Idaho-Montana summer circuit began last week, on Tuesday, June 11, 2013, with two shows in Filer, Idaho, followed by four all-breeds in Blackfoot, about a two-and-a-half hour drive northeast. Filer is just 35 miles north of the Nevada state line and Blackfoot the same distance from the Utah state line. Filer is a nine-hour drive northeast from Sacramento, Calif., also nine hours from Portland, Ore., and about 10 hours from Seattle. These shows draw from all five states as well as Colorado, Montana and Wyoming.

The southern areas of Idaho are arguably not as beautiful as areas in the north of the state where it’s more mountainous, but the views on the drive from Filer to Blackfoot are scenic all the same. Over the past few days, the temperatures ranged from 67 degrees midday on Friday to 89 yesterday, so certainly as long as exhibitors packed a jacket or sweater, the weather can be said to have cooperated with the Blackfoot club.

The scenery between Filer, Idaho, and Blackfoot is beautiful.

The fact is that exhibitors come from all over the U.S. for these shows, and on Tuesday – now picture this, a Tuesday, in Filer, Idaho – the entry was 703, bigger than about 60 percent of the shows across the U.S. on the weekend! That day at the first of two Snake River Canyon KC shows, the Beep Lee-handled Frenchie, Ch. Hilsman Napachal Cruel Intentions, was Best in Show under judge Stephen Hubbell. ‘Sebastian’ is owned by David Berrey, Roxanne Hilsman and Beep, and was Best in Sweeps at the 2012 National. Already a Group winner in 2013, he was bred by Roxanne and V. Phrukwattanakal. On Wednesday, from an entry of 702, the Giant Schnauzer bitch, GCh. Kenro’s Witching Hour, who, with handler Amy Booth, came all the way from Michigan to compete, was Best under Karen Wilson. ‘Dora’ is Number 4 Working dog through April. She’s bred by Robin and Ken Greenslade, and Karen and James Mancini, and owned by Robin with Luke Norton and Doug Hill.

But Thursday is where we really want to begin, in Blackfoot, at the Eagle Rock KC. The entry that day was 1,089, and Best in Show under Mark Houston-McMillan went to Japanese Chin GCh. Dunkirk Hop To It. Tim Reese and Randy Winters’ Dunkirk prefix is better known for Pekingese, of which they’ve bred nearly 100 champions including five Best in Show winners. ‘Kermit’ is among the first of their homebred and owner-handled Chin champions, earned his grand champion title before he was 10 months old, was among the breed’s Top 10 last year and now… a BIS winner. He won the Group under Guy Jeavons.

Reserve BIS went to Jim Smith’s homebred Smooth Fox Terrier Ch. Absolutely Talk of the Town, handled by Eddie Boyes. ‘Taylor,’ who won the Group under Peter Green, is not yet 2 years old and through April had won three Best in Shows and five Group Firsts, but that doesn’t really begin to tell the story, since she won three more Bests in a row the first three days of this month. A daughter of the two-time Westminster Group winner GCh. Slyfox Sneaks a Peek, she’s well on her way to a successful career. Her sire was Number 8 Terrier in 2009, Number 2 in 2010 and 2011, and won at least 52 Best in Shows during his career.

Michael Lanctot’s Sporting Group winner gets credit for having won both Sporting Groups back in Filer as well. Clumber Spaniel GCh. Clussexx Collaboration With Traddles has been featured here in Fancy That numerous times. In 2012 he won 31 Group Firsts and seven Bests, just a warm-up to this year, when he’s among the Top 10 all breeds, a feat I’m told has never before been achieved by a Clumber. The “collaboration” part of his name, of course, comes from the fact that his dam, Ch. Traddles Mrs Thingummy, comes from Sheila Musaeus’ Traddles kennel in Denmark. ‘Seymour’ is bred by Sheila with Doug Johnson, Jeane Haverick and Jamie Hubbard, is owned by Wayne Holbrook, Beth Dowd, Jeane Haverick, Missy Capone, and A. and P. Jarmillo, and handled by Jorge Olivera.

I should mention that, although it may be true that no Clumber has ever reached the Top 10 among all breeds, Seymour is not the first Clussexx dog to do so. Sussex Spaniel Ch. Clussexx Three D Grinchy Glee was Number 1 Sporting dog and Number 4 among all breeds in 2004, the same year he won his first Group at the Garden. ‘Stump,’ of course, went on to Best in Show at Westminster as a veteran in 2009, handled by Scott Sommer for owners Ceil Ruggles and Beth Dowd.

In the Hound Group, Betty-Anne Stenmark’s winner was Bloodhound GCh. Quiet Creek’s Kiss and Tell. ‘Kiss’ is enjoying her third year in the limelight, having been Number 4 Hound in both 2011 and 2012, and holding on to that spot through April this year. Bred and owned by Susan Lacroix Hamil and Heather Whitcomb, she’s handled by Bruce and Tara Schultz.

The Working Group winner, under judge Candy Way, was, appropriately, Akita GCh. Ruthdale’s Candy From a Baby, handled by Laurie Fenner for owners Dick and Linda Stark. Before coming to the U.S., ‘Candy’ the Akita was the youngest champion in breed history in the U.K., where she was bred by Matthew Bostock and Janet Armstrong, and Best of Breed and Group Third at Crufts in 2011. A multiple Group winner last year, she’s the Number 1 Akita through April this year.

Another of Britian’s big winners won the Non-Sporting Group under Patricia Lanctot. Standard Poodle GCh. Del Zarzoso Salvame From Afterglow is handled by Amy Rutherford for owners Sloan Barnett, George Lindemann, Mike Gadsby and Jason Lynn. Bred by Carlos Renau and A. Gonzales, ‘Dino’ was Number 1 in the Group and Number 3 among all breeds in England in 2011 before coming to America. He’s already among America’s Top 10 Non-Sporting dogs, and as much as he’s winning these days, I suspect he’ll be moving right up the rankings.

The Herding Group, also judged by Patricia Lanctot, went to Kim Furlong and Tray Pittman’s sable and white Sheltie ‘Satoshi,’ GCh. PaRay’s Preferential. Tray is best known for breeding top-winning Bichons with partner Paul Flores, but Shelties were actually Tray’s original breed, and he and Paul have continued to have success in the breed. GCh. PaRay Cirque Du Soliel was Number 1 Sheltie in 2009 and 2010. Satoshi is Number 5 among all Herding dogs this year, handled by Tray.

On Friday at the second Eagle Rock KC show, from an entry of 1,129, Peter Green chose Dino, the Standard Poodle, as his Best in Show winner, and Taylor the Smooth as his Reserve BIS. Group judges were Michael Lanctot and Beth Sweigart.

Seymour won yet another Sporting Group, this one under Betty-Anne Stenmark. Bloodhound Kiss had to settle for second to Saluki GCh. Sandstorm Blue Nile Bubbles of Jatara. Readers will be familiar with ‘Bubbles,’ as she was Number 5 Hound last year. Bred by Kathleen Morton, she is owned by Sandra Middlebrooks, Jackie Harrington and Sara Winsted, and handled by Erin Roberts.

Akita Candy also found herself second, under judge Patricia Lanctot, this time to Doberman Pinscher GCh. Tiburon Arsenal. Master Doberman handler Andy Linton shows ‘Gunner,’ a red dog, for owners John and Addy Dolan, bred by John Dolan and Salli Gorman. Through April, Gunner was Number 3 Doberman with 12 Group wins and his litter sister, GCh. Tiburon Ariel Bella Donna, a black bitch, stood right behind him in the rankings. ‘Bella’ was a multiple BIS winner last year, handled by Esteban Farias for owners Melinda and Thomas Moyer. The two come from rock-solid Doberman lines that include Ravenswood and Aquarius.

Chin ‘Kermit’ won another Toy Group, under the previous day’s BIS judge Mark Houston-McMillan. In the Herding Group, Guy Jeavons, who happens to be a Sheltie breeder, selected another Sheltie, GCh. Mistybrooks Panda Crossing, as his winner. Owner-handled by Shannalee Michalsky, ‘Panda’ is also owned by Ava Jane Pickering and was bred by Jan Williams. The bi-blue is a son of one of Tom and Nioma Coen’s top sires, Ch. Macdega Notorious.

The entry on Saturday at Pocatello KC went up to 1,192, and Harrier GCh. Downhome HiTech Innovator earned the BIS rosette under judge Ann Hearn. Handled by Susie Olivera for owner Joe Sanchez, ‘Chet’ was Number 2 Hound last year, is holding on to the Number 3 position so far this year, and either way he’s the top-winning Harrier in breed history, having taken that title from his sire, Ch. Downhome Family Tradition. Chet was bred by Susan Lowder, and Miriam and Kenneth Nell, and won the Group under Larry Sinclair. Bubbles the Saluki was second and Kiss the Bloodhound, third. That’s a tough Group!

Reserve BIS, after winning the Group under Janet Sinclair, was Sheltie Satoshi, with Tray Pittman. Clumber Seymour added another notch to his belt with a blue ribbon under Houston Clark, so far the only dog to win all of his Groups in Idaho. Giant Schanuzer Dora won the Working Group under Susan Godek.

Al Krause judged the Terrier Group and made Miniature Schnauzer GCh. Allaruth Just Kidding V Sole Baye his winner. Handled by Bergit Kabel for breeder/owners Ruth Ziegler and Billie Phelps, ‘Justin’ was featured in Fancy That last October when I mentioned that he was the first Mini Schnauzer in more than a decade to be among the Top 10 Terriers. He finished 2012 as Number 4 Terrier and is up to Number 3 this year, a terrific accomplishment for his devoted breeder/owners and handler.

Jane Forsyth selected a Dunkirk Toy to win Group Five on Saturday, but this time it was a Pekingese, GCh. Dunkirk Imagine That. Bred by Tim Reese and Randy Winters, and owned by them with Marcia Merrill, ‘Tommy’ also appeared in Fancy That last October. Having won 10 Groups in 2012, he’s a multiple Group winner this year as well and Number 3 Peke.

Bulldog GCh. Newcombe Pandamonium at Beda won the Non-Sporting Group under Toddie Clark. Bred and owned by Brenda Newcomb, Claire Johnson and Bev Long, ‘Panda’ is handled by Jay Serion. He’s a son of Ch. Dickey’s Nostradamus, who was Number 4 Bulldog in 2009 with two all-breed Best in Show wins from just five Group Firsts, an amazing ratio. He was bred by Dean Dickey and Sharon Holt, owned by Dean and Eva Dickey, Brenda Newcomb and Claire Johnson, and shown by Brenda and Claire, who must be just delighted that his son is also doing well in the all-breed arena.

The Idaho shows wrapped up on Sunday with the second Pocatello KC show. From 1,111 entries judge Houston Clark made Kiss, the Bloodhound, Best in Show with Bruce Schultz. Reserve BIS went to Eddie Boyes and Taylor, the Smooth. Pekingese “Tommy” won the Toy Group, handled by breeder/owner Tim Reese, under Ann Hearn, and was the last to repeat a Group win for the day.

For the first time on this Idaho circuit, Clumber Seymour stood second in the Group. Stacy Duncan breeder/owner-handled GCh. Whistlestop’s Fire and Ice, one of the “Magnificent Three” Irish Water Spaniel littermates, to the Group First under Larry Sinclair. Co-bred by Colleen McDaniel, ‘Annah’ won the 2012 National Specialty and two Best in Shows in 2012. Her litter sisters, GCh. Whistlestop’s Riley On Fire and GCh. Whistlestop’s Wind on the Water, were Numbers 1 and 3 IWS, respectively, last year and occupy those spots again this year, albeit not in the same order. ‘Riley’ was the National Specialty winner for 2013, handled by Rick Krieger for owners Greg Siner, and Tom and Bethany Urban. Have litter sisters ever won back-to-back national specialties in any breed? I don’t know, but I somehow doubt it. This year a fourth littermate sister, Ch. Whistlestop’s The Wind on Fire, is a Group winner and Number 6 in the breed, so it looks like my Magnificent Three are now four.

Janet Sinclair’s Working Group winner was Standard Schnauzer GCh. Chateau Palos Treaty of Goarrhein, handled by Tiffany Skinner for breeder/owners Don and Mary Lou Just, and Elizabeth Mohrenweiser. This is the second year among the breed’s Top 10 for ‘Tman,’ whose sire, Ch. Oakwood Simply Simon, was a Group winner and among the breed’s Top 10 in 2003 and 2004.

PaRay won another Group, this time with a Bichon, when Al Krause made GCh. PaRay’s Power and Privilege his blue ribbon winner. Owned by Laura Rosio and Paul Flores, and bred by Paul and Tray Pittman, who handles him, ‘Dominick’ won 55 Groups and three BIS through April this year. His sire, Ch. PaRay’s Propaganda, winner of 21 Best in Shows, is the sire of a remarkable four American all-breed BIS winners. ‘Porter’ was Number 1 Bichon in 2003 and 2004, and Number 2 in the Group in 2004.

In the Herding Group, Susan Godek chose Beauceron GCh. De Joie du Chateau Rocher as first, handled by Tyler Crady for owner Marlene Palmer. Bred by Karla Davis, ‘Gideon’ is a son of the breed’s first AKC champion, Ch. Arco du Chateau Rocher, Number 1 Beauceron in 2007, the breed’s first year of recognition. Gideon is one of only two Group winners for the breed this year and has won at least one Group every year since 2010.

The action continues in the northwest tomorrow, with eight all-breed shows in Billings, Great Falls and Missoula, Mont., but the entries fall off significantly, with a high of just 780 on Sunday at one of three Five Valley KC shows. You can learn much more about what happened at shows across America this past weekend, and where all the top dogs stand in the rankings day by day, by visiting Billy Wheeler’s Dog Show Poop.